If I were a Disney Princess, I would have been Belle: independent brunette, poor country town, quirky dinner parties – even right down to the palomino pony. And, obviously, a very important trait shared by Little L and Belle was our love for books. And more books. Lots of books. ALL the books.
See what I mean?
I used to dream of living rooms with floor-to-ceiling bookcases and a ladder on wheels. I’d complain to friends that I hated Uni for making reading a chore, and for replacing “proper books” with hard-to-navagate electronic databases. Despite never having much time, I still managed to fill two entire IKEA bookcases during my undergrad – and accidentally started a casual library operation out of our house when friends began donating, borrowing and swapping. I would travel with two bags – one for holiday reading material, and one for everything else. Seriously – that’s what the carry-on baggage allowance is for, right?
So I surprised myself as much as anyone when I bought a Kindle, having seen solo customers at the restaurant so absorbed in their e-books that they let their meals go cold. We were about to head off on a beachy road trip (more later) with only minimal baggage, and the idea of lugging a whole bag of books around this time just seemed like too much hard work. So, feeling like the biggest millennial hypocrite hipster on the planet, I decided to give one of those newfangled “e-readers” a try.
I’ve gotten rid of those two bookshelves and I’m NEVER looking back.
In a couple of months, I’ve read about double what I normally would – mainly because the Kindle slips into my handbag so damn easily. I never have to worry about it being too heavy or getting the pages bent. The battery life is awesome, and though I generally stick to reading one thing at a time, I like having the option to switch if the mood strikes. I’ve tested it out in all kinds of light conditions and have never encountered a problem so far, not even at the beach at midday or in total darkness while my boyfriend was asleep next to me. And out of those two whole bookshelves, there are only a couple of books which I can’t replace with electronic versions – a couple of coffee-table books, one about dressage training, and an independent publication… in Spanish.
I never, ever thought I would think this, let alone say it or post it online, but here I am.
I’m giving up on books. At worst, a home library just sits around collecting dust and cluttering up your space. At best, books are a visual showcase of our interests and how educated/cultured/intelligent we wish to portray ourselves to guests. Honestly though? I have nothing to prove, and these days I would rather save the space and enjoy the portability.
I bought a Kindle Paperwhite because you can adjust the backlights to suit different conditions, and because it’s designed specifically for reading, as opposed to the Kindle Fire which is more like a tablet.The Paperwhite connects to Wifi so you can download books on the go, and I haven’t yet encountered a problem with it – not even in the mall where my phone struggles to pick up the signal. They retail for about $160AU, and then the Amazon books tend to be around $10-$15 – not exactly as frugal as the local Oxfam bookshop, but again – no clutter. I seriously recommend any fellow Belles to consider making the switch.
Love, Little L